Herboriste Potting Station

Monday was a paint all day, paint all over your hands, paint on your split ends, drips of paint on your legs kind of day. And this is the reason.


I know, right? What are you doing CoCo! After searching for pieces of furniture to paint last week, I was making the final lap of The Warehouse when I spotted this workbench. I had no idea how big it was or what kind of shape it was in because I could only see one end of it. It was weathered, beat up and covered with bits of garden inventory. To be totally honest, it had been completely forgotten. It had been so forgotten, no one knew how much it was but they promised to find out and text me.


I left the store thinking, “Ok, it’s a holiday weekend, I probably won’t hear back from them until some time next week.” At 7:45 pm that same night I received a text with a price and measurements. Now that is customer service. Saturday morning, I headed out to pick it up.


More times than not I can look at a piece of furniture and tell instantly what color I will paint it and the type of finish I plan to use. But the only vision I really had for this one was to paint it white. It’s really a utilitarian piece. You could use it for a kitchen island, a work station, work bench, home school table, craft table, desk, or even to house outdoor grille supplies. I almost had too many options.


As you can tell, it was really filthy so my first step was to use a palm sander to take a bit of the grime off.


With each stroke of paint, I kept thinking about a potting station and once I had the base covered in two coats of Valspar’s Fluffy, it was settled.


I wanted to make sure the top remained somewhat weathered so I worked the paint into the wood with a cloth instead of a brush. You can do this with a brush too but for this type of project I like to use a terry cloth because it soaks the paint up almost like a sponge and I find it’s easier to control the amount of paint that’s being worked into the wood. This gives an inconsistent finish that I love especially during the sanding process. The top boards have not been sanded yet but look at all that chippy goodness on the bottom board.


I think all of the boards turned out really nice once they were sanded.


I wanted the top boards to be just a shade darker and with more of a gray tone than the bottom of the workbench. This came together with a combination of dark wax,


and a custom mix of colored grey wax.


The top board has the dark wax and the bottom board has the combination of the two waxes.


With the top and base of the workbench in place, it was time to tackle the very back plank. Still inspired by a potting station I chose the word “Herboriste” French for “Herbalist” or a sign you would see hung outside an herb shop.


I sorted through my stencils, found the letters I needed and traced each letter with a pencil after measuring the appropriate spacing.


This was the most stressful part of the whole process. I wanted to throw this entire workbench in the woods at least 7 different times.


I used black paint and a fine tipped brush to fill in the letters.


Once the black paint had dried, I distressed with a piece of 80 grit sandpaper and used the same custom wax to seal.


It took me all day to finish this because there were so many steps but it was totally worth it. I hope I can bring myself to take it to the booth.

041015-17 Herboriste Potting Bench - The Crowned Goat

Many blessings,


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  1. CoCo – You have outdone yourself!! This table is amazing! Your hard work is evident by how wonderful the end result is. Thank you for the painting tip of using a terry cloth instead of a brush – great idea! Your French wording is so straight – a definite talent 🙂 I have a message from your table…”Please don’t make me go to the Picker’s Market – I want to stay with you!”
    Vicki and Jennifer recently posted…Friday Faves #64My Profile

    1. Ha Ha! You know the way to my heart ladies! Thank you thank you thank you for all of your sweet and kind compliments. They are very much appreciated 🙂

  2. You’ve got a good eye CoCo! This looks great!!

  3. Liz Bonin says:

    It’s so gorgeous! I would definitely have trouble parting with it! All the paint in your hair was worth it 🙂

    1. Ha Ha! I’m going to work and rework the back porch until I make this thing fit 🙂 Thanks for your sweet compliments. I hope you have a very happy weekend. I’m sending you hugs! Coco

  4. Coco, I LOVE this piece. You are an inspiration, truly. You should be so proud for sure. I LOVE it. I love how you stained and weathered the top and I love the letters you used and added. It’s fabulous! I agree with the girls, please keep it, it looks so pretty. You know over a year ago I bought this picket fence piece with bird houses on the tips and it was painted in crazy colors and I envisioned a potting bench with that being the back. I forgot about it until now. I need to be on the hunt and make it. Thank you for the inspiration xo Lisa
    Lisa recently posted…Pink Roses n Burlap WreathMy Profile

    1. Lisa, thank you so much for all of your sweet comments. I am having such a hard time with this one! I hope I can find a place for it on my back patio area. I keep trying to change up the seating arrangement out there so I can find a way to keep it 🙂 Your picket fence project sounds really beautiful. I hope you find what you need, it sounds like it’s going to be awesome! Hugs, CoCo

    1. Thanks for dropping by Cecilia, I appreciate it! Hope you have a happy weekend!

  5. Almost spit my drink on the keyboard at “I wanted to throw this entire workbench in the woods at least 7 different times.” We can all relate!! Beautiful job on the aged white finish and major kudos on the stencil ~ wow that’s a beautiful detail! Paired with your herb box garden, it’s a perfect set 🙂 Hope it stays with you and we see it styled up all summer on the blog! Bwg ~~~
    Bluwatergal recently posted…thursday night social {24}My Profile

    1. Bobbi, I’m so glad you can appreciate my struggles trying to get the lettering precise! It can definitely be a tough one. I’m definitely hoping to find a way to keep this one. It’s a treasure 🙂 Have a happy weekend, Coco

  6. Robin @ Redo It Yourself Inspirations says:

    Oh this is amazing and such a perfect finish!!! I love how you saw what this bench should be and labeled it. I can just imagine how you’re going to be using this beauty. You’re so clever.
    Robin @ Redo It Yourself Inspirations recently posted…Happiness is Homemade Link Party!My Profile

    1. You’re so sweet, Robin, thank you so much! That is a big compliment coming from you 🙂 I really appreciate it! Hugs, CoCo

  7. Cat @ Pocketful of Posies says:

    Coco –
    This potting bench is amazing! Congratulations on a job well done! I would love to have this at my house! Thank you for sharing it with us!

    1. Cat, thank you so much I really appreciate it! I know I’m supposed to take it to the booth but I am so hoping I can find a way to keep it on my back patio 🙂 Hope you’re having an awesome day, Coco

    1. Thank you Jenny, I so appreciate it! Being a vendor is a lot of fun until you have to decide which pieces to let go. Hope you’ve had a happy week, Coco

  8. What a neat little space to plant your flowers and work outside. I love it. It makes me want to build one for myself instead of always working on my porch and getting a mess everywhere. Thanks for sharing at Motivational Monday Link Party. I can’t wait to see you again Sunday night and what you are sharing.

    Bethany from The Southern Couture
    Bethany at The Southern Couture recently posted…Christmas Lantern Transformed to Spring CenterpieceMy Profile

    1. Thank you bunches for all of the sweet compliments, Bethany!

  9. Love Love Love the white-wash. Beautiful!

    1. Thanks so much, Vicki, I really appreciate it!

  10. Good Job! Thanks for sharing on My 2 Favorite Things on Thursday – Link Party!! I hope to see you again tomorrow … I love having you!! Pinned!

    1. Thanks so much Elaine, see you on Thursday!

  11. I love that you repurposed this work bench into a potting station. It looks very nice. The French is chic. 😉 Thanks for sharing it at The Creative Circle.
    Kathy recently posted…Foyer Fan WallMy Profile

    1. Thanks so much, Kathy, I really appreciate it!

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